FLW Walleye Tour Championship Set for Pierre
Sep 22nd, 2006 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Sep 22nd, 2006 at 12:00 AM
PIERRE, S.D. (Sept. 21, 2006) – Lake Oahe, located near Pierre, S.D., will host the world’s most lucrative walleye tournament Oct. 4-7. The tournament will feature the top 51 professional walleye anglers in the world paired with the top 51 co-anglers for four days of competition. As much as $150,000 cash will go to the winning pro, and as much as $22,000 cash will go to the winning co-angler in this $675,000 no-entry-fee championship.”From what I’ve been hearing, the fishing is pretty good,” said Tom Keenan of Hatley, Wis., the 2006 FLW Walleye Tour Angler of the Year. “Due to the slot limit, I think it’s going to take about 13 to 15 pounds per day to make the top 10.”The majority of competitors will either fish live-bait rigs or troll deep-diving crankbaits, according to Keenan.”Some anglers will concentrate on points throughout the system using either red tails or creek chubs on a Lindy rig or three-way rig. If there is wind on a point, that’s a bonus,” he said. “The other half of the field will troll deep-diving crankbaits such as Rapala No. 8 or No. 9 tail dancers on points or break lines depending on how cold the water is and how deep the fish are.”Keenan foresees tight competition and the outcome could come down to a single fish.”If someone gets lucky and catches one of those 7- or 8-pounders, they will do very well,” he said. “Hopefully, I’ll catch one on day four.”Spring Creek Resort, located at Highway 1804 in Pierre, will host daily takeoffs each morning at 7:30 a.m. The weigh-ins will be held daily at the Wal-Mart store located at 1730 North Garfield Road in Pierre beginning at 4:30 p.m. The community is invited to attend takeoffs and weigh-ins as well as the Family Fun Zone, which opens at 3 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday outside the weigh-in tent at Wal-Mart. The Family Fun Zone features interactive displays, product samples and games for the entire family.During each day’s weigh-in, fans can register for the chance to cast and win an 1850 Ranger Reata powered by a 175 horsepower Evinrude E-Tec outboard. One lucky fan will be drawn during the final weigh-in on Saturday, Oct. 7, and given the chance to cast a lure into an 8-inch bucket located 60 to 70 feet away. If the lure lands in the bucket, the fan wins. Participants must be present during the weigh-in to qualify. The cast will take place immediately following the weigh-in.In addition to takeoff and weigh-in festivities during the tournament, fishing fans are invited to meet FLW Walleye Tour pros Dean Arnoldussen, Eric Olson, Nick Johnson, Dustin Kjelden, Ross Grothe and Ted Merdan along with South Dakota Dairy Princess Jenna Mueller at the Wal-Mart store in Pierre from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30. The pros and Mueller will be signing autographs, answering questions and giving away product samples. A second Meet the Pros night will be held Monday, Oct. 2, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Lake Sharpe Marine located at 502 Island Drive in Ft. Pierre.Ranger and Evinrude will offer test rides in the latest models from Ranger Boats on Saturday, Oct. 7, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Oahe Marina located at 20439 Marina Loop Road in Ft. Pierre. All activities throughout the week are absolutely free.The winning pro at the FLW Walleye Tour Championship is guaranteed a cash award of $100,000. If the winner is a qualifying registered owner of a Ranger, G3 or Polar Kraft boat, he will earn a $25,000 bonus, and if the boat is equipped with a qualifying Evinrude or Yamaha outboard, he will receive another $25,000 for a total cash award of $150,000.The winning co-angler is guaranteed $11,000 cash and is eligible for a $6,000 bonus from Ranger, G3 or Polar Kraft if he is a registered owner. The winning co-angler will also receive a $5,000 bonus if his boat is equipped with a qualifying Evinrude or Yamaha outboard for a total cash award of $22,000.Pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day and fish for a combined boat weight. Pros compete against other pros, and co-anglers compete against other co-anglers. The full field competes during the two-day opening round for one of 10 final-round slots based on their two-day accumulated weight. Weights are cleared for the final round, with the winning pro determined by the heaviest two-day total weight from days three and four. The co-angler winner is determined on day three based on the weight of that day’s catch.National television coverage of the FLW Walleye Tour Championship will be provided by FSN (Fox Sports Net) on November 5. “FLW Outdoors” airs Sunday mornings at 11 Eastern time on FSN, which is broadcast to 81 million U.S. households. “FLW Outdoors” is also broadcast internationally to more than 350 million households in such countries as Germany, China, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Russia, Hungary and the United Kingdom, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoor-sports television show in the world. Additionally, FLW Outdoors is proud to provide tournament coverage to more than 800,000 servicemembers stationed around the world in 177 countries and aboard Navy ships through broadcasts on the American Forces Network.The Pierre Chamber of Commerce is hosting the 2006 FLW Walleye Tour Championship on Lake Oahe. For more information, call 1.800.962.2034.Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail presented by Abu Garcia, Stratos Owners’ Tournament Trail, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Striper Series. These circuits offer combined purses exceeding $37.9 million through 249 events in 2006.For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000.Wal-Mart and many of America’s largest and most-respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart signed on as an FLW Outdoors sponsor in 1997 and today is the world’s leading supporter of tournament fishing. For more information about Wal-Mart, visit Wal-Mart.com.